Zia Hassan

2 Odd Weeks

+++ title = “05” date = 2006 +++

I’m back at home, and while we were gone, summer decided to creep up and take form. It’s not necessarily temperature – today wasn’t excruciatingly warm as summer in North Potomac normally is, but it was the sun that got me. Especially around sunset, it hangs above everything like it’s checking over everyone before it says goodnight.

Vacation was an overall success. The last night we were in Ocean City, we played Texas Hold ‘Em. My sister kept getting pocket ___’s and I kept getting full houses. Weird. It comes back to the question: do you deal the cards or do the cards deal you? Then, we watched an episode of the Office and drifted off to our rooms for the night.

Before I went to sleep, I wanted to listen to some music, and my Creative wouldn’t get past the boot screen. I did hard resets, nothing worked. A note to anyone looking to buy an mp3 player: stay away from Creative. iRiver is apparnetly trustworthy, and I’ve heard mixed things about iPod. Nonetheless, it gave me an excuse to get a new one – can you guess which one I chose? It’s white, stores 30 gb of music (less some space allocated for the firmware), and plays video. The battery life on the iPod isn’t as much as on the Creative, but I found a neat invention called the Geekpod. It’s the size of an ipod, but it will keep the thing charged for about 100 hours, supposedely. It’s about 70 bucks, but that almost seems worth it if you take long trips or something. Thing is, I’d only really need it for my london trip, but I think that the player should be able to handle the plane trip of 7 hours. The one true advantage is that the Geekpod gives you 12 hours of video playback, not including the 2 that a normal charge on the pod will give you.

I bought more books in Ocean City. Specimen Days by Michael Cunningham is about a person who is reborn in 3 different time periods, always New York, and has a strange connection to Walt Whitman’s poems. I figure that I’ll read this on the way to or on the way back from London. Also got a book called Astonish Yourself, by a french philosopher. It describes ways to think that are bizarre and often uncomfortable. I’m really into this stuff.

  • Urinate while drinking. Feel all the organs in between your mouth and your out-spout. You’ve never felt so together, so in place.
  • Call out your name repeatedely. I’ve tried this and it is absolutely bizarre. At first, you feel silly. Then, you start to feel as if it’s someone else calling to you, and you wonder why you aren’t responding.
  • Lie down on a hill looking at the stars. Then, once you’ve registered that view, imagine (or realize, really) that you’re strapped against the bottom of the earth due to gravity, and therefore you’re actually staring down at the stars. Swallow that one.
  • Invent lives for yourself. You come up with elaborate stories, with perfect details, stuff that never actually happened… but you’re going to assume that they did. Since memories are never “real” anyway, and if everyone believes that the events you create did occur, why wouldn’t you believe it yourself?

Yesterday, I went to the Wellness Center to receive a massage. My back has been terribly tight in the past couple months or so, and I figured that having some of the knots undone would really help. It felt great, but the knots are still there, and my neck still cracks everytime I look down. Maybe I need a chiropractor.

Either way, Marian (therapist) was telling me about a museum in Florida, which has real bodies that are somehow preserved. The curators rip open the flesh so you can see the veins, muscles, and tissue visibly. They leave the eyes and teeth in. To a massage therapist, or a radial nerve palsy survivor, this could be one of the most interesting things in the world. To the normal person, it’s inhumane and/or downright gross. Here’s an image. Remember that this was a real person.

I found the stunt kite that Liza gave me for my 19th birthday in my basement and the wind’s been nice lately so I’m thinking of putting it together and trying it out, even though I know NOTHING about stunts. I want to get one of those kites that just hovers really high in the air. I want to smoke shisha and fly a kite on my deck. Is that too much to ask?

Finally. A pack of chicklets that has a green one.

Two nights ago, Chris and I met up with Tanya and Martita at Bennigan’s after searching at Barnes and Noble (like I need more books right now). We drove back to my house to smoke weed flavored shisha. I don’t enjoy getting really high anymore. I think it’s a combination of the resulting paranoia and goofy mess that I become. That being said though, the amount of “flavoring” was so small compared to the tobacco that it provided a mini-buzz that was absolutely perfect.

Last night, watched the season finale of 24 with Mariam, who I watched the Season 4 finale with as well (back when my arm was broken and I didn’t know anything about 24). It was definitely the best two episodes of the season – Jack’s been holding back I guess. I love Jean Smart. We finished up with some of The Office.

Chris Donahue finally fixed my speaker problem (they didn’t work). Now I can listen to KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic. I heard a fantastic artist/song this morning by the name of Nerrina Pallot. I think she’s from the UK and she’s doing a show the day that I get there. Unfortunately I get in after the show’s finished.

Plan for tonight: Possibly drag Chris into a DC adventure with Scott, Ed, and Mike. Before that though, I intend on doing some summer cleaning of my computer and my hard drive. I realize that I have some really tasteless music scattered all over the thing. Best option would be to archive (DVD) a bunch of music I don’t need or want anymore, and just go on a downloading spree on the Anti-music hub (treasure trove for unknown/rare artists).

Small note about Still Life. My next goal is to make a longer piece, and bring Chris into the session, as well as someone who knows nothing about the structure of music. This person could be good at something else. Running, perhaps. Drawing, prose, or math. This is becoming a cross-collaborative process. Not only are we extracting music from photography, but we’re using perceptions of photography and how images should sound from people with very different mindsets. I want to cultivate and control that gap. Widen it, narrow it, see what happens.

The week is halfway over tommorow, which means that I’ve got 8 more days of work until I get on a plane to go to London. Summer – so many colors and textures to choose from. I’m making a gorgeous painting. If only the other guys were around to enjoy it with me.